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Volvo cuts CO2 with new five-pot diesel

Tune me up: Volvo’s new five-cylinder diesel engine will be available in four states of tune overseas, with all but the most powerful specification achieving identical CO2 outputs.

Efficient new diesel, driver support tech not yet confirmed for MY13 Volvos in Oz

12 Apr 2012

SWEDISH premium brand Volvo will slash the CO2 emissions of diesel-powered S60 sedan, V60 wagon, XC60 SUV, V70 wagon, XC70 crossover and S80 luxury sedan for the 2013 model year, at least overseas.

It is too early for Volvo Cars Australia to confirm whether the efficient new 2.0-litre five-cylinder turbo-diesel engine responsible for the reduced carbon dioxide output – which drops to 120 grams per kilometre or less on most models – will make it Down Under for MY2013.

MY2013 for overseas markets will also bring new driver support systems such as road sign recognition, automatic high beam and headlight tunnel detection to the aforementioned models, but again a decision on whether any of these will be offered on Australian-delivered models in that timeframe is yet to be finalised.

The new turbo-diesel will be available in four states of tune, mostly replicating existing power outputs from the 85kW D2 to the 158kW D5, plus a new 100kW/350Nm D3.

According to data supplied by Volvo, on the S60, V60 and V70 the new unit achieves the same CO2 output in the lowest three states of tune (114g/km on the S60), with slightly higher emissions for the most powerful D5 version (119g/km on the S60).

The company also claims the entry-level D2, when combined with the Ford-sourced automatic Powershift transmission, achieves the same fuel consumption and CO2 output as the manual.

 center imageFrom top: Volvo S60, Volvo XC70, Volvo S80, Volvo V40.

Volvo’s senior vice-president of research and development, Peter Mertens, said the new engine also heralds the end of Volvo’s DRIVe branding for its most eco-friendly models.

“From now on the DRIVe symbol will not be used for denominating specific car models since we extend Drive-E to embrace all Volvo Car Corporation’s sustainability efforts, from production to recycling,” he said.

Volvo has committed to an all-four-cylinder engine line-up, so the new diesel could signify a last hurrah for the brand’s five-cylinder format.

Volvo Car Australia public affairs manager Oliver Peagam told GoAuto there is “a process to go through” before the four-cylinder plan is executed across the brand’s range, and the 2.0-litre five-cylinder has “some course to run”.

Mr Peagam said the all-four-cylinder strategy would serve as a point of difference for the Volvo brand.

Other MY2013 tweaks almost guaranteed to make it onto Volvo’s larger models include a transparent LED-illuminated gear selector knob for models fitted with automatic transmissions.

Upcoming cosmetic tweaks include new five-spoke 18-inch alloy wheels for the S60, V60, V70 and S80, a two-tone finish with black contrast paint on 11-spoke 17-inch wheels for the V70 and S80, an updated grille with gloss black detailing on the V70, and brushed aluminium interior trim for the S60 and V60.

Mr Peagam said the new Audi A3-rivalling V40 is likely to arrive in Australia “by the end of this year or early next year, about same time as the new A-class”.

He confirmed the C30 will remain on sale “for the foreseeable future” but that from a new product perspective “the next two or three years for Volvo are going to be pretty exciting” now that the transition from Ford ownership to that of Chinese manufacturer Geely is “well and truly out of our system”.

Following an impressive 30.1 per cent growth in Australia in 2011, Volvo sales are up a further 11.9 per cent for the first quarter of this year, even though its March result slipped 16.6 per cent.

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